Olympus EndoTherapy Polypectomy Procedure


Polypectomy is the medical term for the removal of a polyp. A polyp is a discrete abnormal tissue mass that protrudes into the lumen of the intestine. A polyp is attached to the intestinal wall either by a stalk, pedunculus, or by a broad base.

Gastrointestinal polyps can be removed endoscopically through colonoscopy, esophagogastroduodenoscopy, or surgically if the polyp is too large to be removed endoscopically.

The method used to perform polypectomies during colonoscopy depends on the size, shape, and histological type of the polyp to be removed. Prior to performing polypectomy, polyps can be biopsied and examined histologically to determine the need to perform polypectomy.

Symptoms of Polyps

Though extremely common, polyps oftentimes donít cause warning signs which is why regular screening is crucial for reducing the incidence of colon cancer. However, sometimes symptoms such as rectal bleeding, blood in the stool, and constipation or diarrhea can be indicative of a polyp.


Very small polyps (up to 3 mm) can be removed by cold biopsy where biopsy forceps alone are used to remove the polyp. Though thereís a risk of incomplete removal of the polyp, there is also less chance of a colonic perforation.

Small polyps (4 mm or less) can be removed by hot biopsy. This procedure uses biopsy forceps to close over the polyp. Electric current is passed through the forceps to provide electrocautery. This reduces the chances of bleeding from the polyp base and improves the chance of complete removal of the polyp by destroying the tissue at the base of the polyp.

Most polyps (5-20 mm) may be removed by snare polypectomy, though especially large polyps may have to be removed piecemeal. The loop of the snare is tightened to grip the polyp, and the polyp is pulled away from the wall of the colon. An electric current is then passed through the snare loop to cut through the polyp, while providing electrocautery at the same time. The polyp can then be retrieved using the snare or an endoscopy basket and removed by withdrawing the colonoscope.

Products Available

To order endoscopic devices or request an in-person demonstration, contact an Olympus EndoTherapy representative by calling 800.387.0437.

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  • ERCP - AccessHemostasis